Hillary Clinton Rapid Response Web Site
Hillary Clinton’s campaign rolled out a rapid response site, dubbed “The Fact Hub,” just in time, the NYT’s Jim Rutenberg reports.
It used to be that when a campaign had an argument with a news report, it put out a mass e-mail message disputing the offending item. That was a huge technological leap from the fax machine. Now even e-mail may be growing quaint. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s presidential campaign on Thursday introduced a Web site dedicated exclusively to the instantaneous rebuttal of charges or news reports it deems offensive or wrong.
And the day offered a perfect opportunity for the campaign, with a potentially embarrassing mini-scandal: a waitress’s report that Mrs. Clinton had failed to tip after eating at a Maid-Rite diner in central Iowa, an assertion that ricocheted around the Internet on Thursday.
After NPR broadcast the report, Mrs. Clinton’s campaign responded by saying the candidate and her aides had in fact left a tip: $100 on a $157 check at the diner. The restaurant manager, Brad Crawford, confirmed in interviews, including with The New York Times, that Mrs. Clinton, of New York, and her retinue had indeed left a tip, though he did not say how much.
NPR later included Mr. Crawford’s and the campaign’s versions of events in an editor’s note attached to the online version of its report.
It’s interesting that a rapid response site is considered a new innovation given the quick embrace by campaigns of blogging. Rapid response would seem to be the most obvious and efficient use of campaign blogs, after all. Then again, most campaign blogs have just rehashed stump speeches.
The tip story is amusing on a variety of levels. For one thing, a $100 tip on a $157 check is so far beyond generous as to be a head scratcher. For another, it would seem that whomever received said tip for distribution was a mite slow on the distribution end, given that the waitstaff was unaware of any tip being left.